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    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 2, 2005
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      HispanicVista.com Weekly Digest

      COMMENTARY-OPINION, February 28th, 2005

      Report Faults Bush Initiative on Education
      By Sam Dillon
      New York Times
      Concluding a yearlong study on the effectiveness of President Bush's sweeping education law, No Child Left Behind, a bipartisan panel of lawmakers drawn from many states yesterday pronounced it a flawed, convoluted and unconstitutional education reform initiative that had usurped state and local control of public schools.
      The report, based on hearings in six cities, praised the law's goal of ending the gap in scholastic achievement between white and minority students. But most of the 77-page report, which the Education Department rebutted yesterday, was devoted to a detailed inventory and discussion of its flaws.
      EDUCATION 5 Articles
      1. -- Governors Work to Improve H.S. Education
      The nation's governors offered an alarming account of the American high school Saturday, saying only drastic change will keep millions of students from falling short.
      2. -- High Schools Must “Finish the Job” of Education Reform, Spellings Says
      Education Secretary cites success of No Child Left Behind while urging principals to support accountability, higher standards in high schools
      3. -- President's New High School Initiative, Other Proposed Programs Tackle Issues Important to Hispanics
      President's budget focuses on high dropout rate, teacher quality and college aid
      4. -- President's New High School Initiative, Other Proposed Programs Tackle Issues Important to Hispanics
      President Bush's new High School Initiative has the potential to do more to curtail the high dropout rate problem among Hispanics…
      5. -- California school districts shortchange students of color
      Oakland – A new report released Tuesday by the Education Trust-West identifies for the first time huge per-pupil spending gaps in California public schools…
      NYTimes.com EDITORIAL
      Our Unnecessary Insecurity
      Sept. 11 changed everything," the saying goes. It is striking, however, how much has not changed in the three and a half years since nearly 3,000 people were killed on American soil. The nation's chemical plants are still a horrific accident waiting to happen. Nuclear material that could be made into a "dirty bomb," or even a nuclear device, and set off in an American city remains too accessible to terrorists. Critical tasks, from inspecting shipping containers to upgrading defenses against biological weapons, are being done poorly or not at all.
      Injustice, in Secret
      ATTORNEYS FOR the Justice Department appeared before a federal judge in Washington this month and asked him to dismiss a lawsuit over the detention of a U.S. citizen, basing their request not merely on secret evidence but also on secret legal arguments. The government contends that the legal theory by which it would defend its behavior should be immune from debate in court. This position is alien to the history and premise of Anglo-American jurisprudence, which assumes that opposing lawyers will challenge one another's arguments.
      "Don’t Mind if I Take a Look, Do Ya?"
      An Examination of Consent Searches and Hit Rates at Texas Traffic Stops is the largest-ever study conducted anywhere on such discriminatory police practices, based on data representing an overwhelming majority of traffic stops and searches in Texas. Hispanics were one-and-a-half times as likely as Anglos to be searched by El Paso police after a traffic stop.
      'Minutemen' Civilians Set to Patrol Arizona Border
      By Lara Jakes Jordan
      U.S. officials charged with securing Arizona's vulnerable border from illegal immigrant crossings are bracing for what they call a potential new threat - the Minutemen.
      Nearly 500 volunteers have already joined the Minuteman Project, anointing themselves civilian border patrol agents determined to stop the immigration flow that routinely, and easily, seeps past federal authorities.
      EDITORIAL/New York Times
      Ideology and AIDS
      The Bush administration has contributed to suffering and death through the so-called global gag rule, which prohibits Washington from giving money to any group that performs - or even talks about - abortions. Organizations that provide desperately needed family planning and women's health services have lost their financing. Now there are moves in Congress and inside the administration to apply a similar rule to needle exchange programs. That would be an even more deadly mistake.
      Making It Even Harder to Make Ends Meet
      By Katrina vanden Heuvel
      The Nation
      Your credit card issuers are hoping that the sixth time will be the charm for a bill they've been pushing since the Clinton years: "The Consumer Bankruptcy Reform Act" (now S.256 & H.R.685). This legislation would make it more difficult for people turning to bankruptcy as a last resort to actually discharge their credit card debts.
      Dems’ Foreign-Policy Silence Deafening
      By Deborah Orin/New York Post
      FUNNY how Democrats seem to be struck dumb by the success of President Bush's trip to Europe.
      The central tenets of Democratic foreign policy are now falling like dominoes. Dems such as Sen. John Kerry predicted Iraq's election would be a disaster. Instead, it was a triumph and sparked a yearning for freedom elsewhere in the Mideast.
      Dems blamed Bush for the lack of progress toward Israeli-Palestinian peace, but it now seems that Bush's strategy was right: wait until Yasser Arafat was gone and let Israel build its wall.
      The GOP's Wingnuts
      By Paul Waldman
      Last weekend's Conservative Political Action Conference held here in Washington featured a pantheon of right-wing extremists and some downright nutjobs. The Gadflyer's Paul Waldman wonders why there's no outcry when mainstream Republicans rub elbows with radicals in their movement.
      Paul Waldman is editor in chief of the Gadflyer.
      Had you happened by the Conservative Political Action Conference taking place at the Ronald Reagan building in Washington this past weekend, you would have been able to hobnob with representatives of the entire spectrum of conservative American thought…
      Open meetings planned for Homeland Security's privacy panel
      By Sarah Lai Stirland, National Journal's Technology Daily
      The Homeland Security Department on Wednesday unveiled the 20 members it has picked to form a privacy advisory committee.
      The committee will advise the department on how to protect people's privacy at the same time as the department develops surveillance technologies designed to protect the nation against terrorists.
      Midterm Anxiety
      By Charlie Cook, National Journal
      There is a palpable nervousness among Capitol Hill Republicans these days. They are well aware that history has been unkind during midterm elections to the party of second-term presidents: In such elections since the end of World War II, the president's party has lost an average of 29 seats in the House and six in the Senate.
      The White House's plans to overhaul Social Security and make deep cuts in domestic spending have heightened the Republicans' anxiety…
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      Patrick Osio, Jr.
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